Categories: PackingTips and Advice

Your guide to staying clean on the festival scene

Finally, festival season is here! You can almost smell it. (We actually could, hence the blog).
From crazy camping commodes to space-saving wet wipes, here’s our guide to stopping your bits and pits from smelling like a Black Sabbath mosh pit this year.

Rinse-free washing

Washing without water. A bizarre proposition, this essentially involves standing in your festival suit and shamelessly working yourself into a dry lather, while your alarmed campmates patiently cook their breakfast sausages over a cigarette lighter.

Rather than just masking the smell (which is what dry shampoo and Lynx Africa are for) rinse-free shampoo and body wash actually removes dirt and grease. We have no idea how this works, but then we don’t understand a lot of things. Like the internet for instance.

Hand sanitiser

First two words. Gastro Flu. Third word(s): Glastonbury 2016.

You may have rolled your eyes at the chick obsessively sanitising at the compost loos, but she wasn’t the one chundering into a bucket every 45 minutes when Glasto got hit by gastro this year. Oh, and that wasn’t a bucket, it was a four-day old portaloo. Bad times.

Loo roll

This should be obvious. If it’s not, we have a problem


As should this.

The solar shower

You know you’ve set up camp in the wrong place when the couple next door whip out their £10 solar shower and modesty screen.

As you gaze in envy at them rub-a-dub-dubbing every morning to the smell of Herbal Essences and frying bacon on their Super Stove 3000, you desperately want to befriend them. But alas, you can’t, they hate you remember. Why? Because you, Generous Dave and a bottle of Glen’s vodka kept them up all night. Dry shampoo and a bag of Cheetos it is for you, my filthy friend. Never mind, back to the moshpit.

The pocket solar shower

Ah ha smug neighbour, but have you seen this? The pocket solar shower holds enough water for a seven minute shower apparently. (Or alternatively, for free-pouring 10 litres of strong cider from a hastily erected homemade drip).

All of this, of course, relies on the rare ingredient at any festival. Sunshine. Otherwise, it’s just miserably pouring cold water over yourself. Speaking of which, see below.

Collapsible water container

A good idea anyway, you know, for rehydrating and such, collapsible water containers can carry about 20 litres of water. Attempted with varying degrees of success at past festivals, the protocol is thus. Fill her up at the tap, self-consciously crawl into your bathers, and then ask someone who hates you to throw freezing water at you as your furiously rub suds (and tears) out of your eyes.

A shower

Or try this one. An actual shower! While most hardened festival goers have never once found the ‘shower area’, they do exist at most festivals and can be fairly quiet in the afternoons. Therefore
consider packing a small bottle of body wash, just in case you stumble across one getting lost on the way to the bar for your mid-afternoon sherry.

Bin Bags

True, festivals should be a time for breaking away from everyday societal pressures, such as pretending to understand the single market economy or dusting. However, no one actually wants to wade through a sea of beer cans, used wet wipes and wayward Pringle tubes to reach their sleeping quarters. As well as festival housekeeping, bin bags will also come in handy when your wellies inevitably give up the farmyard fight and spring a puncture.

Wet wipes

The wet wipe shower should be a regular feature for any self-respecting human at a festival. And boys, you need to get behind this from the start. Because when you go crawling to the girls in your camp on day three, all feral and smelling of the worst kind of BOY, we’re not going to help you. Because yes, we do need all those 120 wet wipes for ourselves.

Or expandable wipes

An industrial-sized pack of baby wipes can take up approximately the same amount of space as a small box of red wine. So, depending on your priorities, consider this space-saving option instead. Just pour body wash onto the tiny pellets and watch them expand into soapy wipes. Festival voodoo? 100{1e29904c885515873022ed5b62c6c7d923686363a219a3c356dc5ccea4ad6161}.


You’ll be relieved to hear that you can now buy a camping stool WITH a hole in the seat for all your festival ablutions. Simply slot in the disposal bag full of crystals to soak up the er, matter, and away you go!

Sure, you’ll probably get laughed off site or pitchforked with tent pegs when you park your stool down in the middle of the dance tent to pop a squat. But who’ll be laughing when you’ve kept your front row spot at the Main Stage for eight hours, eh? Still not you, probably.

Portable disposable urinal

A touch more discreet, is perhaps the TravelJohn resealable disposable urinal. It’s unisex (how, we don’t know) and holds up to 800ml of liquid. Which, if you’re wondering, is approximately a pint and a bit. And a damn sight easier than drunkenly negotiating guy ropes at 4am when you’re busting for a chemical toilet.*

*Please note, others in your tent may not share this feeling. Hence why we emphasised the ‘discreet’ nature of this product. As in, just don’t tell them about your midnight rendezvous with John.

Nail varnish

Girls, the back of your nails may look like you’ve just clawed your way out of cabbage patch, but the fronts will at least look pretty.

Dry shampoo

We haven’t forgotten about you, old friend. Dry shampoo has a place at every festival. And in our hearts. It’s the white streaks, dusty temples and synthetic smell of cheap Piña Coladas.

Well our festering festival friends, that’s it. Enjoy dirty basslines, clean hands and have a corker!

Hannah Jeffery

Published by
Hannah Jeffery
Tags: festival essentialsfestival packing listFestivals

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